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  • Writer's pictureJoanne Jacobs

It's easier to become a teacher, but ...

States are dropping licensing tests to qualify more teachers, write Hannah Putnam and Heather Peske of the National Council on Teacher Quality. Are the new teachers competent? We don't know.


"Effective teachers are the most important in-school factor for improving student learning, so lowering the bar for entry into the classroom is essentially gambling with children's futures," they write. But "almost no one is tracking the impact" of "making it easier for people to become teachers."

Decades of research shows that "licensure tests are predictive of teachers' effectiveness in the classroom," Putnam and Peske write. It's important for elementary teachers to know the content they're expected to teach." Furthermore, "lowering the standards for entry perpetuates the myth that racial diversity and teacher quality are incompatible goals." In Florida, would-be teachers no longer have to prove knowledge of the subjects they'll teach, if they have a master's degree -- but the degree doesn't have to be in that subject.

Minnesota may drop the requirement that teachers pass licensure exams on content knowledge and reading instruction.

Wisconsin may drop the Foundations of Reading test, which measures "knowledge of scientifically based reading instruction," in favor of a portfolio.


The neediest students are the most likely to be taught by novice teachers, note Putnam and Peske. If these teachers are less effective, these students will fall even farther behind.


A few states are analyzing teacher effectiveness."Texas tracked the results of temporarily suspending licensure test requirements for some teachers and ultimately elected to put the requirements back in place," they write. Massachusetts has released a report comparing teachers with emergency licenses, a pandemic policy, to the traditionally licensed. Emergency teachers are more racially diverse, researchers found. Retention rates are similar. There's no evidence yet on effectiveness.

6件のコメント


Richard Rider
Richard Rider
2023年5月03日

There can be merit in certification, but in CA, today's certification is centered aroung liberal edu-babble. My wife taught at high schools for 30 year and then for years was a lecturer/mentor for student teachers at a major CA university. She became more and more discouraged with the CA certification requirements which have everything to do with using the right buzzwords and little to do with training and selecting effective, dedicated teachers. It's what is best described as "form over substance." I would prefer to see competing private VOLUNTARY certification programs. Ultimately let the schools and the parents decide what constitutes the best criteria for getting good teachers. School choice is the obvious answer.

いいね!

Bruce Smith
Bruce Smith
2023年5月03日

The definition of "effectiveness" depends upon which effects are in demand. American states are unusually narrow in their definitions of the effects wanted, focusing -- especially since George W. Bush's federalization of state schools -- on reading and elementary mathematics, and suffering because of their neglect of science and languages additional to English, for example.

いいね!

ゲスト
2023年5月01日

Decades of research does not show that licensure tests predict teachers' effectiveness, and Goldhaber (their cite) has research showing that race is a better predicter than licensure tests.


I don't want the tests going away, but NCTQ is a hack organization that lies.

いいね!
mrmillermathteacher
mrmillermathteacher
2023年5月03日
返信先

Can you show that the data was cherry picked, or are you just saying so because you don't like the conclusion?

いいね!
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